Why am I discouraged?

8 Apr

Why am I discouraged? Why am I restless?
I trust you!
And I will praise you again because you help me, and you are my God.

These are the words that have been circling round my head for the last few days. They’re from Psalm 42 – did you recognise them?

This is a Psalm of a discouraged man…”My tears have been my food day and night…even my bones are in pain”.

While you might not be in fear of your life, I’m sure most of us can relate to these words sometimes. Things just get on top of you and you just want to give it all up and escape for a couple of years days.
Both Josh and I have been a bit fed up recently. I mentioned in my last post that I’ve been ill and that we’re both super busy with work. It’s been all too easy for us to moan about things…as we drag ourselves out of bed in the morning still feeling as exhausted as the night before, or as we receive another work email or phone call on our day off. Our favourite pastime has become planning our summer holiday and saying “Imagine when we can just stay in bed as long as we want!”…or “We’ll get to walk in the mountains and know that we don’t have to go to work the next day!”

However, I listened to a sermon on Psalm 42 last week and I was struck again by the words of the Psalmist as he gives himself a little pep talk:

Why am I discouraged? Why am I restless?
I trust you!
And I will praise you again because you help me, and you are my God.

I only need to look at the photos from my camera this week to know how good God is.

I have an amazing, wonderful, lovely husband who works very hard and who loves me very much.

I have the best job. I get to work with my best-friends and have a front row seat to see what God is doing in Aberystwyth every day. 95% of the time it gets me out of bed in the morning with a spring in my step.
We had our Review and Preview this week and it was SO encouraging to see how much God is blessing our church and how much he has done in the last year. (and everyone liked my burger cakes!)
I would highly recommend that you read our report here.

We have wonderful friends who feel like an extended family. This week it has struck me again how blessed we are to have a group of people around us with whom we can share so freely. With our bathroom out of action we’ve been using other people’s showers all over town, but it hasn’t felt awkward at all because we’re so used to just popping over and walking straight into their homes anyway. We know (and they know in return) that we are cared about and that we help each other out when the needs arise.

We had a really good training day with the police for NightLight. They couldn’t have been more encouraging, helpful and positive about what the churches in our town are doing through NightLight. When we see how much God has provided and grown this project we can’t help but be excited.

These are just four things, amidst many others that lift my spirit. So just like the Psalmist, this week when I am feeling down I am reminding myself of God’s goodness and rehearsing to myself the blessings which we have received.

It’s not long before we’ll be leaving Aberystwyth and St Mike’s behind us, and so instead of being downcast we need to be making the most of the opportunities and experiences still open to us here in our last few months.

Quick Questions

1. What makes you feel discouraged?
2. What encourages you when you’re feeling downcast?

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4 Responses to “Why am I discouraged?”

  1. Thomas Ashmead April 8, 2011 at 7:37 pm #

    Just to say Psalm 42 is probably my favourite Bible passage. It is so honest but with such hope.

    1. When I’m just every small thing discourages me. My messy desk at work discourages me a lot. But the knowledge that if I tidy it I or someone else will make it messy again discourages me from cleaning it.
    2. Tea, naps and chats with really good friends (and DotC, of course!)

  2. Kelly April 8, 2011 at 9:23 pm #

    Thanks for entering my Giveaway!!!

    I have a 7 month old, and these last 7 months have had their fair share of discouragement. I LOVE my little guy, but it’s hard when you’re sleep deprived and don’t know what to do with your baby! lol

    I have clung to, “I can do ALL things through Christ who gives me strength.” I know it seems cliche or simple, but sometimes, that’s all I can handle 🙂
    It’s also comforting to know that other moms feel the same way too!

  3. Amanda April 9, 2011 at 1:16 am #

    I get discouraged when my hubby gets discouraged. I’m a pretty positive person, and he can be pretty negative at times. It’s hard to stay ‘up’ when he’s ‘down’.

    I usually use my friends words (either spoken now or remembered in my head from long ago). I have some amazing friends who are gifted with being good encouragers.

  4. Rachael Dabbs April 9, 2011 at 10:44 pm #

    I get quite discouraged about being single. I sometimes feel at church there can be quite a bit of stigma about it, especially when elderly dears say “have you got a boyfriend?” in an unhelpful but well meant way, which makes me think “is there something wrong with me?”.

    However, good tunes and chatting with friends always makes me feel better!

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